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review 2017-01-03 14:21
Grunge (Monster Hunter Memoirs #1)
Grunge - Larry Correia,John Ringo

This review is written with a GPL 3.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot, Booklikes & Librarything by  Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission.

Title: Grunge
Series: Monster Hunter Memoirs #1
Author: John Ringo, Larry Correia
Rating: 2 of 5 Stars
Genre: SFF
Pages: 320
Format: Kindle digital edition






Oliver Gardenier, aka Gary Stu, is a boy wonder with some seriously messed up parents. He joins the marines in defiance of his mother and ends up talking to St Peter and given a mission back on Earth: to hunt Monsters. Joining up with Monster Hunters International, Oliver details his adventures.


He also details his seriously messed up theological thoughts on Jesus and God. And just in case you forget, he also states, over and over and over, how successful with women he is.



My Thoughts:


If this had been just an MHI story, it would have been awesome. 4stars easy, pushing 4 1/2.


First thing that pushed it down was Gardenier’s continual references to his womanizing. He justifies it by saying he doesn’t want to leave a widow and orphans behind when he inevitably dies on the job, but that is so much BS. He’s probably leaving a trail of byblows who are growing up without a dad and string of woman who wanted more than a night. Those excuses lead into the second, and bigger, reason.


Theology. Ringo, and he is the author of this book, not Correia, presents sin as something just kind of ‘meh’ and that Jesus is our Dude who tells God to chill out on our behalf. In fact, Ringo/Gardenier states that you have to do something REALLY bad to go to hell now. Ringo threw around enough biblical names, terms, etc that it is obvious he’s at least familiar with Scripture but simply choosing to twist it to allow him to do whatever he wants.


Once past those, like I said,  it is a tremendous MHI story. I’ll be reading the next book but with some serious reservations.


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text 2016-12-27 02:11
Monster Hunter Memoirs: Grunge: I've read 4%.
Grunge - Larry Correia,John Ringo

"My mother is a *&^%$ hippy bitch. And I am sick and tired of this *&^%$ hippy hair. Would you please cut it all off? I promise not to tell"

~Oliver Gardenier to a WWII veteran barber



Excepting the profanities, this is going to be most excellent.

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review 2015-11-21 00:45
A dance of Cloaks
A Dance of Cloaks - David Dalglish

Not quite as good as The Way of The Shadows (which is why i rated this 3.5 stars, instead of 4) but a pretty entertaining read in its own right.
At te end David explains he got his inspiration for this series from The Night Angel series and the Game of Throne Series, and i can certainly see there involvement. For one almost everyone dies, and i do meant almost! i believe in the end only 3, 4? characters of any worth survive. Plus there's the whole cloak thing, running around assassinating people, unfortunately for David Brent just happens to be the more skilled story teller, i was more involved in his characters. A Dance of Cloaks is still totally worth a read though - i just recommend reading this one first then Brent Weeks stuff (he can be brutal & sickening).

I also read that the main character for this series is based off a side character for another series (spin-off?) apparently that character was all mysterious and had no back story but was everyone's favorite so David being the nice bloke he apparently is decided to write The Watcher his own series, we find out how be became who he is, where he came from, etc. which is pretty cool. I'm definitely interested in reading the rest of the series.


Oh i forgot to mention - There's these... God worshipers in this series, 2 of them actually, an evil lot and a good lot. There spectacular. The evil guys have this separate group loosely attached to them called the faceless women, there wrapped in all this cloth, covered from head to toe, and the strips of cloth move like dancing shadows, and there ridiculously badass and murder everyone. The way the scene's were written were superb, the imagery was so easy to follow and picture, i adored those scene's and the creation of this unique women. 

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review 2015-09-02 17:09
Grunge Gods & Graveyards 2: The Lady in Blue
The Lady in Blue: A Grunge Gods and Graveyards Mystery - Kimberly G. Giarratano

I was really impressed with the first book in the Grunge Gods & Graveyards series, Grunge Gods & Graveyards, so I was excited about reading this one. And once I picked it up, I could not put it down.


As with the first book, this story revolves around the Bloom family, and the fact that some of them can see and speak to the dead. Liz is going to school for criminology and wants to help her Great Aunt finally be able to find out who murdered her, and move to the other side, before it's too late. Lana (who is the one that tells the story, and also was in the first book) wants to know the truth, but at the same time, remembering the truth hurts her.


I've said this before - and I'm sure I'll say it again - but I absolutely love the way that Kimberly writes. She is so good at making the reader feel the emotions that the characters are feeling, whether the character be good or bad - and "bad" is a relative term. She has a way of keeping you interested in the story she is telling. Her words flow so smoothly that, before you know it, the story has come to an end and you're sitting there with these raw emotions. I laughed, I got angry, I cried ... an amazing story.


I really like both the characters of Liz and Lana. I like how the story is told from Lana's point of view, but it is Liz, with questioning that she learned in class, that pulls the story out of her. There's a lot of "flash backs" as Lana remembers what happened in the last weeks of her life, but it's not uncomfortable. In fact, it just feels right as you "go back in time" and see how things played out at the time. The similarities between Liz and Lana are apparent in their conversations, and the fact that they are both so willing to learn from each other is so nice to watch.


The end was both happy and sad. Not only is it the end of the book, it is the end of the story, as this series only has two books. As far as I'm concerned, she ended the story perfectly, and I can't wait to read the next book by this author.


At the time this review is written, this story is free on Amazon, and I would definitely recommend that my readers go and pick it up.

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review 2015-06-23 19:04
Grunge Gods and Graveyards
Grunge Gods and Graveyards - Kimberly G. Giarratano

(I received a copy through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.)

The title is a bit misleading, as there are indeed ghosts and graveyards, but don't expect literal gods to appear, and take those (as well their songs, linked to each chapter) for what they are: a tribute of an era gone by, as short as it was intense. I think this is the kind of story whose appeal will definitely vary *a lot* depending on the people: if you were a teenager in the 90s, it will resonate a lot differently than if you were born earlier or later, and didn't approach that period the same way that we did, or didn't live through it at all. (And I say "we" because the characters in this book, should they be alive in our world right now, would be a couple of years younger than I, not more. I will confess to being highly biased, due to my own memories of those years and the bands I used to listen to as well.)

In other words, amidst the teenage angst and drama, lies nostalgia, which fits very well with how Lainey will never get back what she had with Danny—just like the Lady in Blue will never get what other younger women had, stuck in time, doomed to become more and more transparent, then vanish.

There's romance, but not too much, and it doesn't trample the actual plot: good.
There's music and a lot of name-dropping, but I thought it was well-integrated enough, and didn't feel awkward: good.
The small town setting: stifling, difficult to hide anything for long, family secrets... Good.
Strong 90s vibes (no cell phones, bands and brands from that time...): check.
The law-related side of the story: I don't know enough to US law to tell whether that part was true to actual laws or not. It seemed believable, so... good enough for me. Also, corrupt officials aren't so often a theme in YA novels: nice change.

This novel had an intense side to it, sometimes too much, in that what happened to Lainey, the way she was treated, bordered on too unbelievable to be true. It's hard to reconcile the idea of such a mean environment (not only the high school one) to what I knew when I was 17. We had cliques, and people who were more popular than others, but never did things stoop down to such a level. Maybe it does in some places, and I just happened to be in a normal enough high school? Maybe it's the way schools are shown in novels and series, because otherwise it'd just be too boring to read about and watch. There were a few moments when all the angst and drama felt like too much to bear... yet it was precisely also what elicited my reactions, even though they kept going from notsalgic to annoyed, from glad to angry. Had this story left me indifferent, it would've been something else.

There were some stereotypes: the mean queen bee, rebellious teenagers, and Lainey came off as a little dull and too tempted to easily give up at times. However, she didn't do it in the end, learnt to stick to her guns, went on when even the people closest to her seemed to have deserted her... and the clichés weren't as annoying as they are in other stories, because several characters were actually deeper than they appeared at first, and had more to their personal stories than met the eye.

Conclusion: 3.5 to 4 stars. Not exactly the novel I expected, as there were less ghosts and a more complex plot anchored in very real matters. I think that was better, all in all: it avoided veering too much into paranormal romance-only territory, which wouldn't have been as satifying for me.

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